Animal Shelter Friends Group Rolls Out a New Program

May 16, 2018
Courtesy of: Dottie Reynolds Sparky

A heartwarming new program created by the Friends of the Southern Ocean County Animal Shelter (FOSOCAS) called “Someone Helped Me” will be supported by funds raised at the upcoming event Artful Noir this Saturday, May 19, at 5 p.m. in Barnegat Light.

The name “Someone Helped Me” suggests what it’s all about: aiding pet owners who otherwise could not afford to get veterinary care for their animal loved one.

FOSOCAS members explain how the program started.

The shelter receives numerous requests every year from residents of Southern Ocean County who find themselves in the heartbreaking situation of being unable to afford necessary veterinary care for a pet who is often their only companion and also a best friend. They choose to surrender their dog or cat to the shelter, hoping that the shelter can provide the medical care that they cannot. As painful as it is to owners, they cannot allow their pets to suffer.

The stories are tragic – for example, the newly divorced dad who could not afford an expensive surgery for the family dog, but who wanted to spare his children yet another painful separation … the service dog who would be paralyzed after years of being there night and day for his owner if he couldn’t get a crucial surgical procedure … the woman who was ready to surrender her cat, saying, “Seventy-five dollars probably doesn’t sound like much, but I simply do not have it, and I love him too much to let him suffer.”

“In the past, what was happening was that these owners left off their pets, went home and grieved their loss while the pets were also grieving, suddenly abandoned to a shelter and deprived of the companionship that had become so important to them,” FOSOCAS volunteers said in a press release this week. “But this new program, ‘Someone helped me,’ has begun to change that.”

Earlier this year, FOSOCAS identified this as a priority, a huge need, and found a small amount of money to establish the new program. 

Dottie Reynolds, co-president of the organization, explained, “As stretched as we always are for funds to do all we’d like to, we realized that this was a need that simply had to be addressed. As soon as we did that, we all just knew that we would find a way to provide ongoing funding. We just needed to get started.”

Soon after that, it was decided that the proceeds for the upcoming benefit event “Artful Noir – A Gala of Art and Fashion for a Compassionate Cause” would be earmarked for this important new program. Artful Noir is a joint effort between Wildflowers by the Lighthouse in Barnegat Light and FOSOCAS. 

Created by Cricket Luker, a FOSOCAS board member and owner of Wildflowers, Artful Noir will take place at one of the premier residential estates in Barnegat Light.

Said Luker, “We will use these magnificent homes and gardens as a backdrop to show art-to-wear designer clothing and accessories and also paintings, sculpture and pottery. A string trio will fill the evening air with music, and for those interested, there will be self-guided house tours. It will be magical!”

“And perhaps best of all, all of the proceeds from the event will go toward FOSOCAS’ ‘Someone Helped Me’ program. So everyone involved can not only be inspired by the event, they are doing so much good for these animals and their owners,” said Reynolds. 

To learn more about this event, call Lois at 609-494-9497. Tickets are available at Between the Sheets, 10th Street and Central Avenue in Ship Bottom, and at the website—M.S.







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